Russian Teachers


My host brother Ilya (age 7) and sister Vika (age 6), here on Day 1, were my favorite and most valuable Russian teachers.  They never lost patience and always took the greatest delight in my language blunders.  My first breakthrough moment came with Vika who was (as usual) sitting with me at my desk as I did my homework.  She asked me something I did not understand (again, as usual) and in trying to ask her to repeat I must have said something unintelligible.  She stared at me for a few seconds with a quizzical look on her face before slowly saying “Мы  ... друг друга ... не понимаем!”  It was the first time I understood a complete sentence in Russian.  Yes! It’s true! We don’t understand each other!



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“Sunset at the Railroad” by PCV Nicholas Baylor Hall. Namibia, 2011.